Thursday, October 7, 2010

Blueberry Applesauce

Kids like colors. They like weird colors, in fact.

And they really like it when their food represents their weird color fetish.

This is how blue applesauce came to be. Some "genius" decided that since Blue's Clue's was such a popular show, they would market applesauce with Blue on the label, and color the sauce to match. Apparently, this idea made the applesauce company a lot of money, so they decided to make blue applesauce a permanent product.

I was going to pick some up in town today, but decided that that would be sending the company the wrong message. I didn't want my purchase to put their sales over the top, thus resulting in more money for them to create more blue applesauce.

That, and I forgot.  

Here's my problem with this. Blue dye #1. It has been linked to causing behavioral problems in children. I've seen this firsthand. My daughter, Valerie, used to throw wicked temper tantrums after being fed Skittles at preschool. I didn't know what it was at the time, but was contemplating an exorcism.

And I'm not even Catholic.

Another "treat" that Valerie enjoyed was blue-raspberry slushies. Hmmm....

I'm not a doctor, nor do I play one on t.v., but I was able to diagnose and treat her just by eliminating Skittles and slushies! Valerie is now a happily married nurse, who no longer requires her mother sitting on her while she thrashes about. 

Lucky for her. 

If a child is accustomed to eating blue, green, red, or purple food, it may be difficult to transition them to a healthier alternative. When we were doing foster care, we had a couple of boys who wouldn't eat anything that didn't come from a can or box. If I made a large pot of homemade chicken noodle soup, it would go untouched by them unless I could show them the can. So I got smart. I bought a large can of soup, dumped it into the chicken bucket, washed it out and hid it in the cupboard. Whenever I needed to show them a can, out it came. I eventually removed the label so I could use this can as "proof" with different kinds of soup. Funny enough, the boys ate my homemade soup.

And they liked it.

So, as a parent, we have to learn how to market our products. If a child wants strawberry milk, give them strawberry milk. With real strawberries. And if they want blue applesauce, give them blue applesauce.

Minus the blue dye #1.

~Blueberry Applesauce~

Wash, peel, quarter and core 10 apples. I used Jonagolds, but you can use any or several different kinds. (This is a good way to use up apples that may be past their prime too.)

As you quarter the apples, put them in a bowl of cold water that has 1-2 Tb. of lemon juice in it. This will prevent the apples from turning brown.

When you have your apples ready, put them in a large *stainless steel pot. Add 1/2 cup water to the apples. Turn the heat to medium. When the apples start to bubble, turn the heat down to low and cover the pot. Let cook for about 15 minutes.

Remove lid and add 1-2 cups frozen blueberries. The more blueberries you use, the bluer the sauce. Replace lid and turn off heat. Let sit for about 5 minutes.

In a food processor or blender, process small batches until smooth. Be careful~it's very hot!

Don't ruin the goodness of this sauce by adding corn syrup or white sugar. If you need to sweeten it, use natural sweeteners, such as; real maple syrup, rapadura/sucanat, honey. (Remember not to use honey in kids younger than 1 year of age.)

My "blue" applesauce appears more pink in this picture, but that is not the applesauce's fault.

Blame the

I freeze our applesauce in quart containers, but you could also water bath can them. For baby food, freeze in ice cube trays.

*If you use an enamel coated pot to cook the apples in, watch the heat closely. The apples tend to burn to the bottom of the pot.

Or so I've heard...


This post is linked to Food Renegade's Fight Back Friday.

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